Home - , , , - Straight Talk Launches $79.88 Verizon Based 3G Mobile Hotspot, Plans Starting at $15/Month

Straight Talk Launches $79.88 Verizon Based 3G Mobile Hotspot, Plans Starting at $15/Month

America Movil's Straight Talk is getting into the mobile broadband business with a 3G-only hotspot that  runs on the Verizon network. The hotspot is the UniMax U240C. It's priced at $79.88 and supports up to five connected devices.

The Straight Talk hotspot is currently only available from Walmart but is listed on Straight Talk's Devices Page where there's a link to the user guide (download PDF), (view online). I imagine StraightTalk will eventually ofter the hotspot on their own site.

To go with the new hotspot, there are five plans
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  • $15 for 1 GB good for 30 days
  • $25 - 2 GB - 30 days
  • $40 - 4 GB - 60 days
  • $50 - 5 GB - 60 days
  • $75 - 7GB - 60 days
Those prices are significantly less expensive than comparable prices from any other prepaid mobile provider except of FreedomPop and Millenicom. Plus with Straight Talk you get Verizon coverage rather than the more limited Sprint coverage offered by most other value priced competitors. That makes Straight Mobile Broadband is an exceptionally good deal provided you are OK with Verizon's 3G speeds of  between 600 Kbps and 2 Mbps. If you want more speed, most other mobile broadband providers offer some form of faster 4G data like HSPA+, LTE or WiMAX. See US Prepaid Mobile Broadband Plans Compared for details of all major operators prepaid mobile broadband plans.

36 comments:

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  1. I'm not excited about this. Why won't Verizon open up its LTE network like AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile have done? IMHO, this puts Verizon at a competitive disadvantage. By making LTE more accessible, they can begin refarming the CDMA spectrum for LTE and ultimately saving money by not paying licensing fees to Qualcomm. LTE is not the wiz bang, newest technology that it was 3 years ago.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Verizon is smart,they obviously keep the premium stuff for paying customers.

      Delete
    2. I'm not so sure. T-Mobile is quickly growing because it is more ready and willing to adapt to market conditions. For the moment, T-Mobile's growth is outpacing that of Verizon and AT&T. AT&T and Verizon both are playing catch up to the prepaid, non-contract market. Being smart in business is also being able to evolve with the market and customer wants, needs, and demands.

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    3. Matt, Verizon does just fine with more profitable post paid customers, at the end if the day nobody can touch vzw's raw physical presence.

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  2. Although, I will admit that the 60 days before expiration is intriguing.

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  3. so how much date does 10/month get me?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. $10 was a typo. The cheapest plan is $15 for 1GB

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  4. Smart business move for Walmart and ST. Go after price sensitive customers who need wide hotspot coverage and are not willing to pay market prices for fast speeds with that coverage. Verizon prices 3G data low for Walmart/ST volumes because they have more and more excess capacity on the old EVDO network that they can't shut off for several more years. Win-win deal here.

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  5. Quite intriguing. But will have Straight Talk's infamous arbitrary "kill your account if you use data for a day or two" policies?

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  6. Verizon is in the business of making money for their shareholders. And they do a good job of that. The CEO of Verizon said that there 3G network is a cash cow. They just do maintence and plan to farm it out more. Verizon prepaid is getting the Moto G. That might be Verizon first move into selling quality smartphones on prepaid.

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  7. Who prices these plans? The cost per GB goes down to $10 at the $40 and $50 plans and up to $10.72 on the $75 plan. $5 penalty for people who aren't good at math I guess.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can get back at them! Buy two hotspots! You can have 8gb for $80/month, or $10/GB! Break even at 111.832 GB!
      ;-)
      (They won't mind; you gave them an extra $5/month, and they made money selling the second hotspot).

      Delete
  8. Looking for a replacement for my clear (unlimited 4g $20/mo.) when sprint kills it in the next few months. But this sure doesn't look like it...

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    Replies
    1. The Sprint/Clear WIMAX is not scheduled to be shutdown until sometime in 2015. Have you been notified that your service will be terminated sooner?

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  9. How do you determine how much data is left on a card? I don't see any displays on the device itself that may give a rough estimation of data consumed. Can you log into your account on the website to see how much data is left to consume on the current card that is providing service?

    There has to be some way to determine this rather than just guessing.

    Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. The device's browser based configuration panel at 192.168.1.1 has a data counter.

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  10. Will they let me use my mobile hotspot on my inc 2 now?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, tethering on Straight Talk phone plans is still prohibited.

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  11. It keeps saying 192.168.1.1 is down and wont let me on.... help please?????!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let me guess, you are trying to do the initial device setup? It so:
      1. Have you activated the hotspot with Straight Talk?
      2. Hotspot battery is charged and hotspot is powered up?
      3. Your PC is connected using WiFi to the hotspot's SSID which looks is UMX plus 3 digits?

      If it still doesn't work try resetting the hotspot with a paper clip in the hole next to the charger connector

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  12. What do u mean the 192.168.1.1 has a counter? I go to that url and there will be a counter?

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  13. How or where do i activate my straight talk hotspotmobile device

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  14. My wife and I purchased this device(umx straighttalkhotspot) the performance is terrible. The device is slow running and loads a lot! Online videos stall constantly and when my logs on to a website its crashes. Help!!! Should I cut my losses or purchase a more expense plan. I have the 2gb plan. Please because my wife is a part-time college student and I purchased the hotspot for her. She in my ear about it now lol! But seriously help please!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The UMX hotspot uses Verizon 3G is is quite slow. A more expensive Straight Talk plan will not improve performance.

      If your wife only needs data at home, wired broadband (Cable or DSL) will be much faster than Straight talk and probably less expensive.

      If she needs something portable look for devices and plans that provide 4G HSPA+ or LTE on AT&T, Verizon or T-Mobile. See Updated: US Prepaid Mobile Broadband Plans Compared for what's available.

      Be sure to check coverage maps to verify that the operators you are considering have 4G data is available where she will be using the hotspot, Coverage Maps For All Prepaid Carriers

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  15. When checking your balance for the hot spot. Is the data that it shows what you have used or what you have left??

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    1. I don't have the device but it's probably the amount used. You could verify that by using it and seeing if the number goes up or down.

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  16. I have been trying for a week to add the new minute card I purchased at Walmart , I could not finish this, I called on the phone to add the minutes the computer could not understand the code , I tried 6 times and then gave up, I like the Hot Spot but am very upset with this continuing problem.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can add refii PINs online here.

      If that doesn't work I recommend calling Straight Talk's "Executive Resolutions Dept." at 1-305-715-6500 or 1-800-876-5753 during business hours.

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  17. this piece of junk chews through your data plan in a matter of hours. watch out for the huge bill

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. troll somewhere else... You just throttle down until the next renewal date.

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  18. I am looking to replace my current internet supplier, which is tied to a phone company plan I have in my home. It is DSL, but my speeds are (44 to 55 mbps download) and (15 to 25 mbps upload) with intermittent cutouts of service. Had tech out to service it several times and was told that the line needs upgraded with some type of new equipment, which he said might happen in the future. I am wondering if I purchase this hotspot can I use it at home for my laptop and tower computer. My wife is on the laptop several hours daily (on Facebook) and I use the tower computer maybe 1 to 2 hours daily, majority of use is web surfing, no video, no gaming, 5-10 e-mails per week. I am also interested in buying this for use when we travel in our RV, mostly to southern states. I have checked my approximate data usage on the US Cellular site, which has an estimated use chart and come up with using about 1.5-2.0 gb per month. Is this unit durable enough to go through daily use of this kind?
    Thank You,

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    Replies
    1. Mobile broadband is almost never a cost effective replacement for DSL or a cable internet. I find it hard to believe that your PC Web usage will be only 1.5-2.0 GB/month for the usage you describe. The US Cellular data calculator is for estimating data usage with a phone. PC browsing uses much more data than browsing on a phone. Your DSL provider should be able to tell you how much data you use. I suspect it will be 30 GB/month or more.

      Also, speeds with the Straight Talk hotspot will be much slower than you are used to, 0.5 - 2 Mps.

      Using the hotspot while RV'ing should work reasonably well if you can live with the slow speed.

      I haven't heard of any reliability issues with the Straight Talk hotspot but Straight Talk's customer and technical support has a very poor reputation especially when it comes to resolving issues.

      I've removed your email address from your comment. It's a bad idea to post your email on the internet where spambots can and will harvest it.

      Delete
  19. I am considering buying a T-Mobile 4G MiFi mobile hotspot for my home use as well as when I am travelling. Are you familiar with this unit? A few questions. Who do they use for a carrier, do you buy data cards for it, if so are they expensive, would it be feasible for home use? Walmart has them for $49.99, which includes 5g of data. Do the data cards expire after 30-60 days whether used up or not, like Straight talk, or do they stay active until used up? I am the one that posted the comments and questions about the Straight Talk hotspot. I think I posted my DSL speeds incorrectly, they should be (.44 to .55 mbps download) and (.15 to .25 mbps upload). Thanks for letting me know that my homes use is quite a bit more than I was thinking it would be. Also do you know if Trac-Fone has a hotspot unit?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Details of all carrier's prepaid mobile broadband plans can be found here: US Prepaid Mobile Broadband Plans Compared.

      All T-Mobile plans expire after 30 days except for some Walmart exclusive plans that last 60 days. T-Mobile hotspots use the T-Mobile network and coverage is quite limited outside of urban areas and probably not a good choice for RV'ing. Something AT&T or Verizon based would be more expensive but more likely to work in the boonies.

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